cycling. Solo, unassisted pro cyclist Lachlan Morton on tour route

  cycling.  Solo, unassisted pro cyclist Lachlan Morton on tour route

He is the ninth man on the Education First team on the Tour de France. Lachlan Morton called the American team “The Alt Tour” on Saturday, in other words an alternate tour. his challenge? Complete the same route as Peloton, but in bike-packing mode, with the bag attached to your bike, without the slightest assistance. Instead of recharging the batteries every night at the hotel, Lachlan Morton would be alone to sleep, eat and wash. There is no question of making even the slightest connection in a motorized vehicle. So that he has to drive 5,510 km (65,500 m D+) instead of 3,383 km on the official route!

In other words, a great challenge, “in the spirit of the first edition of the Tour in 1903,” is the essence of the Education First Team. “No peloton, no team car, no mechanics … Just Lachlan, his bike and his map of France. His goal is to beat the peloton in Paris who has it all.”

“This era of cycling pioneers was really exciting, Morton explained to the Guardian. At that time the organizers needed only one finisher, which was completely different from what it is today. “

The project is part of a charitable approach Lachlan Morton is running to raise money to buy bicycles for children in disadvantaged countries. It is above all a question of reintroducing a part of the epic in Cycles. That’s exactly what characterizes the 29-year-old Australian sprinter. Despite a slim record on the professional circuit, he has become an icon. For two seasons, he has embodied the face of the American team, and in particular its alternative calendar founded by English equipment maker Rafa, who has made Morton one of its main ambassadors.

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A routine in gravel races and crazy challenges

Even though he competes in a few Pro Tour races per season, his schedule is primarily structured around gravel races and motivational challenges.

For two years, he has been making more appearances in races unknown to the general public and in XXL formats and scenarios. He was one of the first pro to line up a 200-mile race on rocky trails in Dirty Kanza, Kansas, or the totally insane 2000 km race in GB Duro, Autonomy between the south of England and the north of Scotland.

He was once again discussed after breaking the Everesting World Record in two episodes last year. On 13 June, first, he climbed 42 times, climbing 1.9 km at a rate of 11% to achieve a height of 8,848 m in 7h32’54”. But analysis of his GPS data showed an anomaly (he may have missed 300 m D+) and his record was invalid. Seven days later, he put it back up to set the record in 7:29:57″. Later in the season, he prepared for the Giro by flying over an event of over 700 kilometers in a single stage in the desert. of the Sierra Nevada in Andalusia.

“Half of the next three weeks, I’ll spend riding it”

With this “alt tour”, conceived during his participation in the Tour of Italy 2020, he goes to the next dimension: “In a certain sense, this is a project that I have created and designed throughout my life. , he explained to the Guardian. I am delighted to be a part of their team as they can see the value of investing in something other than just getting results. I hope that through a project like this we will be able to reach a larger audience. reach out and inspire people.”

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He expects to suffer down the road: “The biggest challenge is self-reliance,” he said. I’ll take everything I need, my clothes, my mattress, sleeping bag, and my kitchen set. (…) I think I will drive about 12 hours a day but I will be on the road for longer because you have to take breaks and refuel with water and food. I think half of the next three weeks I will spend riding it. “

He’s not going to steal the show from Julian Alaphilippe. But he is going to tell the real story of a street convict.

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